i’ll be there

I’ve been a {mostly} stay at home mom for my kids. They are fabulous displays of my most creative work. They are sensitive, kind, considerate, polite, and typical teenagers. No matter what, they will push the boundaries set. They’re supposed to. Doesn’t mean it isn’t exhausting.

As a mom, I’m a nutritionist, referee, health coach, fashion consultant, tutor, life coach, counselor, and number one fan. It’s my job to ensure that my young ones have enough sleep, food, clothes, support, and incidentals. I’ve done a pretty good job with that.

But now, in this state of Coronacation, some roles have fallen off, and others have become more important. There’s a brand new one: social coordinator. This is a whole ‘nother level of motherhood. It used to be that school events and friends dictated where my kids were on any given evening/weekend. Now that we’re all trapped in our house together- with my spouse working from the basement- that’s up to me.

I’ve chosen an approach of moderation. There is a wake-up time and a bedtime. Meals are on a schedule. And the kids have to vary their day. I’ve given them some suggested activities and allowed for their own creativity. So long as they don’t spend the entire day playing video games. My kids entered the pandemic well-rounded. I want them to stay that way.

One kid does well within structure. If bedtime is 9:00, he’ll be ready for sleeps at 8:59. The other appreciates guidelines, plus one. If bedtime is 9:00, he’ll stop what he’s doing at 9:03 and only then prepare to go to bed. As any other parent, I have to carefully choose my battles, without surrendering the structure I’m aiming to provide.

We gathered this evening to play a game. One kid brought a sugary drink to the table. It’s Sunday. I had told him this drink was for weekends/special occasions. He assumed he was allowed this drink since it’s still technically the weekend. The thing is- he’s had one the past two nights. And we just had cookies after dinner. Like, that’s enough. Let’s not push it. He stormed off to put the beverage away, muttering under his breath.

When he returned, he sulked at the table. When my other son was out of the game, I asked him to stay at the table with us. He stormed off telling me that I made the room so tense that he felt uncomfortable in his own home. (Maybe the kids are a little dramatic.) I sat stunned for a moment and then went up to my own room to process and have a cry. (Maybe they get the drama from me.)

I cried, but it wasn’t satisfying. Because really, I was doing what I’m supposed to do. I’m the mom. They were doing what they’re supposed to do. And I’m glad that they see each other as a team. So, actually, it’s a win. Isn’t it?

I’m trying to see the positives in this. Because unfortunately, I think we’re one week in to an eight week lock-in. I’ve got to keep this ship sailing forward. Bad metaphor, since we can’t go anywhere. But you know what I mean. No matter what, I’ll still be here for my guys. Some days we’ll drink sugar drinks. Other days we’ll read books and play cards. No place else I’d rather be.

I love words. Words swirl and dance around in my head. I have many deep thoughts. Some thoughts plague me. In order to release them, I have to assign the words. Once the words are strung together, I feel free again.

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